The Vikings continued their blitz of sixth-round draft picks by addressing the linebacker position with the acquisition of Ohio State's Ross Homan. A two-year starter who replaced Rams first-round pick James Laurinaitis in the Buckeye defense, Homan is a prospect with a lot of upside.
When asked what he envisions his role with the Vikings, he said the best teaching he can get on the field will come from a pair of veteran linebackers who are among the best at what they do and he will be willing to step in any role the team has for him in their master plan.
"I will do whatever they ask," Homan said. "They have two great linebackers, (E.J.) Henderson and (Chad) Greenway, to learn from, so I'm excited about the opportunity."
Homan is a ball-hawk who is seemingly always around the ball, which is saying something given the level of competition he faced on a weekly basis at Ohio State. He didn't hesitate when asked what he views as his strengths as a player.
"My instincts," Homan said. "I can read play-pass coverage-wise and help with the run. Hopefully, I can utilize all my skills to help the team out."
His resume is pretty impressive, including a whopping five interceptions – a huge number for a linebacker – in his junior season in 2009. He will be able to hit the ground running since he is familiar with Vikings defensive coordinator Fred Pagac, who he called "a legend at Ohio State" and is looking forward to getting coaching from linebackers coach Mike Singletary, of whom he said, "his name pretty much explains itself."
Homan was a bit undersized as a 225-pound senior, but added 10 pounds of weight from the end of the Big Ten season to the Combine – not the way most people gain weight in the winter months.
"I put on weight and it was all good weight," Homan said. "I ate healthy and just wasn't eating fast food to try and gain pounds. It was a gradual increase of weight and I ran a good time at the Combine, felt good in my position drills and I've maintained the weight."
Initially, his primary role may be to compete for a spot as a special teams player. Most scouts believe he can be a force on special teams in the same way college linebacker standout Heath Farwell has become. But his goals are to be an every-down type linebacker and believes the Vikings will be an ideal fit for his skill set.
"Definitely," Homan said of his intention to fit in immediately. "With the 4-3 scheme (the Vikings run), it's very similar to what we ran at Ohio State. Hopefully, I will be able to pick up everything very quickly."
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.
Homan a productive, instinctive LB
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